One of my favorite times of the year at National is our annual homecoming
weekend. Younger trimester students take advantage of the
four-day weekend and break from classes, but once you're in clinic,
it is so valuable to participate in the festivities!
With Alumnus of the Year Dr. Tony Hamm and Megan
Dr. and Mrs. Ken Dougherty were kind enough to sponsor my
attendance to this year's homecoming. Dr. Ken and his wife live in
Florida, where he practiced for 28 years in his own private
practice, and now serves the university on various committees.
With Brent Heitmeyer, Mrs. and Dr. Ken Dougherty
At this point in my education, I cherish every opportunity to
gain free knowledge. The doctors that presented covered a wide
variety of topics, and you can bet I was sitting there soaking it
With Dr. Erin Quinlan, my SA clinician
With Dr. Kristine Tohtz
The gala held on Saturday night was a perfect ending to the
weekend. President Joseph Stiefel spoke of our university and
recognized many individuals for their contributions to our
university, most notably, the late Dr. Vrajlal Vyas. Although I
never knew Dr. Vyas while he was still at the university, it was
clear that this man made a lasting impression on students, faculty
and friends within the National community. He was remembered
through the words of Dr. Robert Shiel and inducted as the newest
member of the NUHS Hall of Honor. We spent the rest of the evening
eating a delicious meal, conversing with others, and dancing the
With the university administration
A tremendous thank you to the alumni office for all of the time
and hard work they contributed to making yet another homecoming
weekend successful. I hope in years to come, I will be equally
involved with our university and be able to pay it forward to
future students at National! #TGIHomecoming15
Just as the hype of boards has died down, I've been keeping
myself plenty busy with activities at school!
This week at NUHS, we hosted our first Trivia Night for
students, faculty and staff. Our very own Dr. Robert Shiel
organized the entire event, being the trivia master that he is!
Categories consisted of The Simpsons, Geography, U.S. History,
Classic Movies, Art and Literature, Sports, Music, and Current
Events since 2015. I was a member of the team "The Fighting
Oxymorons," and we ended up earning 2nd place in the tournament! We
hope to keep the tradition going annually!
Another first held this week was the Motion Palpation
Institute's (MPI) first Sports Summit, held here in Illinois.
Motion Palpation, or "Mo Pal" as we call it at school, is a
national organization that teaches chiropractic students and
physicians to analyze the spine by palpating for certain segmental
restrictions and them adjusting patients to increase motion in
MPI is run by some of the country's best chiropractic
physicians, and this weekend they all came together to present on
various methods for treating athletes. We covered topics such as
Dynamic Neuromuscular Stabilization, McKenzie Method, myofascial
taping techniques, Functional Movement Systems of assessment, and a
variety of soft tissue mobilization methods. All of these tools are
widely utilized for assessing pain and dysfunction in athletes, and
then finding ways to improve the areas of dysfunction and prevent
further injury. Some of the greatest leaders each presented on
their topics of expertise, and we as students had the chance to
pick their brains and learn from all their clinical experience. We
also had the opportunity to meet students from other chiropractic
schools such as Palmer, Logan and NYCC.
It was a fun-filled weekend of listening and learning from some
of the greatest minds in our profession, and it's always a great
opportunity to add new experiences to our "doctor's toolbox" when
treating future patients!
In an effort to continue to expand my skills and techniques, I
traveled to Columbus, Ohio, this past weekend to take the Perinatal
Care: Webster Certification course of the International
Chiropractic Pediatric Association's diplomate program. This first
module offers the opportunity to learn and become certified in
Webster Technique, a method of diagnosis and treatment for
correcting dysfunction in the pelvis of pregnant women.
Good morning from the beautiful city of Chicago!
The Webster Technique has been taught by Dr. Jeanne Ohm for over
30 years, and she has truly changed the lives of so many women with
whom she has worked. The concept of Webster is to optimize pelvic
function, alignment, and movement, in order to potentially decrease
the difficulties associated with pregnancy and labor. The protocol
consists of analyzing the direction in which the sacrum may be
fixated, increasing motion in the pelvic joints, and affecting the
correlated soft tissue structures such as muscles and ligaments.
The technique has tremendous success with easing pain and
challenges associated with pregnancy, so women are always searching
the online database for local Webster providers. It is exciting to
have earned my certification and be able to work with this
population of patients! :)
The entire seminar was so inspiring. We discussed the changes in
obstetric care over the decades and how chiropractic care can offer
tremendous relief for women seeking alternative options during
their pregnancy. It was so empowering, realizing that I am going to
make these important changes in women's lives, and in the lives of
their future children.
National has always been a very science-based chiropractic program,
aiming to train its students as primary care physicians. Although
we don't focus too much on the traditional philosophy of our
profession, this weekend taught me how important it is to keep an
open mind about this topic. Some chiropractic schools really focus
on the concepts of innate intelligence and subluxation, and
although National does not, Jeanne Ohm truly made a valid argument:
Despite what each of us believes, she kept emphasizing that "Life
is intelligent," and there is no reason to argue with that.
Two cells can come together and develop into a fully functioning
human being. Pregnancy and birth have been occurring in our species
since the beginning of time, and it is important to realize that
the body truly does know what it is doing. Life IS intelligent, in
that even before the development of modern medicine, miracles have
been occurring naturally and without all of the interventions we
use today. Maybe it's time that we take a different approach to the
way we bring infants into this world, and the way in which we
support a woman's natural ability to carry and care for a
Recently at NUHS, I attended a weekend course taught by The
McKenzie Institute USA. This educational foundation has
developed a method to diagnose and treat patients suffering with
musculoskeletal pain originating from the spine and extremities.
Robin McKenzie was the founder of this institution, which began
researching disorders of the musculoskeletal system in 1982. Since
its beginning, McKenzie Method was utilized primarily by physical
therapists, but it has in recent years become more accessible to
(Photo courtesy of The McKenzie Institute, New Zealand)
One of the most unique features of McKenzie Method is the
concept that patients have the power and responsibility to help
treat themselves through exercises and lifestyle modifications.
This also adds a component of compliance to each patient's
treatment plan, assuming that they will actively work to help
correct and maintain proper posture and movement patterns. McKenzie
treatment involves the patient in actively caring for their
symptoms, which has an empowering effect that is able to eliminate
pain for each person in the end.
I was enrolled in the Part A course, the first of the series
toward certification that is geared toward focusing on the lumbar
spine. With our class size of about 20 people, an even mix of both
students and practicing doctors, we were able to work hands-on with
two patients who were coming in complaining of low back pain. We
practiced running through a McKenzie-based physical examination,
taking a thorough history with the patient, and going through the
diagnostic protocol that are used to help identify the
classification of different pain presentations.
Once we were able to identify the type of mechanical back pain
we were dealing with, we proceeded to work on exercises with each
patient to help reduce and relieve their pain in different regions.
The most rewarding aspect of the weekend was to see both of the
patients leave the seminar with a reduction in their low back pain
as well as in their radiating pain.
Getting to work with current DCs throughout the seminar was such
a tremendous experience, and there was much clinical knowledge to
be gained from these doctors! I even had the opportunity to meet
Dr. Anthony Hamm, the current president of the American
Chiropractic Association! In a couple weeks, we will be returning
to complete Part A of the seminar.
Now that I am an intern in clinic, I'm beginning to hone in on
what seminars I hope to take in the next year and what types of
additional skills I want to obtain for practice. At National and in
the Chicago area, there are so many tremendous seminars and
certifications available for us as students. With all of the
developments in the field of medicine, it will be valuable to have
other skill sets such as McKenzie to offer to my future patients
when I am in practice.
Last Friday night was our tri-mixer where all of the students
were invited to come out and meet each other. As an officer for
Student Council who helped plan the event, it's always fulfilling
to see tons of students come and participate in social events! The
cold and the snow can't hold us back from enjoying a weekend night
out with friends (like my friend KC and I)! :)
All right, so my title is a bit silly, but it's also quite
fitting. This week, students, faculty, and staff joined together to
celebrate the grand opening of the Eagle's Nest at our Lombard
Move that bus!
The Eagle's Nest is the new "student hub" here at NUHS, serving
as a place for people to congregate for lunch, conversation,
study-breaks, and relaxation. The Eagle's Nest is open 24/7 and is
now the best location available on campus for students wishing to
study at any hour of the day. Beginning the first day, students and
faculty have been taking advantage of this gorgeous new lounge
located in Janse Hall. This was a much-needed space for students,
who have been looking for a casual place to relax between classes
and gather with friends.
With President Stiefel in the Eagle's Nest
We also held a mascot-naming contest in October to promote
school spirit and get students involved. Our official NUHS mascot
is "Fitz" the Eagle, named after our institution's founding father,
John Fitz Alan Howard.
Integrative Pediatric Care
Over the weekend, I took a course offered by our Lincoln College
of Postprofessional, Graduate and Continuing Education titled
"Pediatrics for the Integrative Medicine Practitioner." The
instructor, Dr. Robert Dumont, is an MD who realizes the importance
of integrative medicine and utilizes natural therapies to help
relieve children of illness.
We covered different therapies such as traditional Chinese
medicine, acupuncture, homeopathic medicine, and dietary
modifications. All of these categories of therapies can be utilized
and combined to naturally treat common pediatric conditions without
intervention of pharmaceuticals.
One of the biggest concepts I took away from the seminar was the
importance of diet and nutrition in childhood wellness. Food
sensitivities to dairy, soy, and gluten can have a myriad of
negative effects on different systems throughout the body, and they
present as an incredibly diverse array of symptoms. Sometimes, a
thorough lifestyle evaluation and simple observation of the child
tell us exactly where the problem is arising, and exactly where we
can intervene. It was a very unique and beneficial seminar that
provided me with great reference material for treating children in
my future practice!
• 5-Minute NUHS Campus Tour
• What I Learned in 6th Tri
• Opportunities Outside the Classroom
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